Readiness Checklist

Do a basic assessment of where your institution is at, and identify the steps you need to take to implement an inclusive, local sourcing initiative


  • Leadership and the board have communicated organizational support
  • Supply chain leadership is supportive of the program
  • Supply chain managers and department heads with purchasing authority have been educated about local and inclusive purchasing goals and empowered to make program decisions
  • Dedicated staff have been identified to manage organizational objectives
  • A business case for local and inclusive sourcing has been developed, institutionalized, and communicated

Partnerships and Community Engagement

  • Partnerships have been developed with local minority and women chambers of commerce and other local supplier diversity organizations
  • Community-based organizations working within the target geography and on issues of small businesses, and/or cooperative development, support, and/or acceleration have been identified
  • Other institutions with overlapping supply chain needs have been identified as partners
  • Focus groups, interviews, or other community engagement processes have identified community priorities around local and inclusive purchasing
  • Hospital leadership is represented on the board of local supplier diversity, business development and inclusive economic development organizations
  • Community advisory board is positioned to help guide the effort and ensure that it is “with” and “by” and not just “for” the community

Data and Reporting Infrastructure

  • Current software system can track spending by zip code or within target geography
  • Current software system can track spending by business certification type
  • Reports on the status of local and diverse spending can be regularly generated
  • Reports can be generated for specific spend categories (construction, facilities, medical supplies, etc.).
  • Data can be collected on the growth of local and diverse vendors over time (size of businesses, number of jobs created, etc.)
  • Future supply chain needs and projections can be assessed and communicated to partners

Staffing and Interdepartmental Infrastructure

  • A specific position oversees the local and diverse procurement program and coordinates other members of the supply chain department, as well as department managers with purchasing power
  • Representatives from the supply chain department, departmental procurement, nutrition services, the legal department, community engagement, and the office of diversity meet regularly or are part of a local purchasing taskforce
  • The legal department has provided feedback on contracting and Request for Proposals (RFPs) language to ensure they comply with guidelines around competitiveness
  • The legal and/or risk departments have provided feedback on providing assistance for bonding, retainage, insurance, and other processes that may be difficult for small businesses to comply with individually

Other Strategic Goals

  • Increasing local and diverse spending is listed as a strategic priority, with specific goals for different categories of goods and services, and construction
  • Local and inclusive purchasing programs are linked to overall organizational diversity and inclusion goals
  • Local and inclusive purchasing programs are linked to overall organizational sustainability goals
  • Local and inclusive purchasing programs are linked to community health goals, such as healthy eating initiatives

Supply Chain Practices

  • Bidding opportunities are communicated regularly to partners such as local minority chambers of commerce
  • Local and inclusive purchasing goals are embedded within RFPs and contracts with tier-one vendors
  • Invoicing periods can be adjusted to accommodate vendors who need to be paid on a faster time schedule due to capital constraints
  • Assistance is provided for electronic invoicing and other technological requirements that may be a barrier for small businesses
  • Participation of a certain number of local and/or diverse vendors is mandated for bids above a certain threshold
  • Vendors have the opportunity to participate in a mentor-protégé program to grow their capacity, or other vendor education programs
  • Technical assistance is provided for issues such as bonding and retainage, insurance, and healthcare-specific product specifications

Staffing and Accountability

  • There is a stated and specific goal for local and diverse purchasing
  • Clear definitions for local and diverse vendors exist
  • Supply chain managers are evaluated based on meeting local and diverse spending goals
  • Data on progress and contract compliance is reported to the board and c-suite leadership on a regular basis
  • Purchases over an established threshold are automatically reviewed by the board

Scaling Local Impact and Building Community Wealth

  • Partnerships are developed with other anchor institutions to increase demand for local and diverse vendors
  • Investments are made to support the small and diverse business community
  • Support is given in particular to employee-owned business incubation and social enterprise development projects
  • Provisions regarding living wages are included in RFPs
  • Provisions regarding inclusive, local hiring are included in RFPs
  • Provisions regarding local and diverse contracting are included in RFPs
  • Compliance documentation on inclusive, local hiring and purchasing from vendors is required

Simple Policy Fixes

  • Create department and staff positions dedicated to inclusive, local sourcing
  • Require that local and/or diverse vendors are considered in Request for Proposal (RFP) pool
  • Make inclusive, local sourcing an explicit goal...

Quick Practice Upgrades

  • Adjust payment periods and invoicing processes to accommodate small businesses
  • Incorporate local and diverse spending objectives into job descriptions and evaluations for supply chain
  • Communicate with community partners...